Karen joined Burness in November 2020, and is a digital content manager responsible for developing Burness’s voice on social platforms. Karen also oversees the Frank Karel Fellowship, a summer program that matches first-generation and/or college students who identify as Black, Indigenous, or People of Color with leading non-profit organizations in the DC metro area.

As a storyteller, Karen uses narrative creation, digital strategy, messaging, branding, and community engagement to help people and organizations tell their stories to authentically engage with their audiences to drive change and see results. She has successfully helped organizations like theBoardlist, Junior State of America, Wellesley College Office of Admission, and more.

Karen is a first-generation college graduate of Wellesley College in Massachusetts, where she studied political science and comparative race and ethnicity studies. It was working at Wellesley Admission that she discovered her love for mentoring first-generation college students.

Prior to Burness, Karen served as an educational consultant in Shanghai, China, where she advised international high school students navigating the American college admissions process. She has also interned at 270 Strategies, a political consulting firm, where she worked on projects for leading education and environmental organizations.

Karen is a proud New Yorker who currently resides in Washington, D.C. In her spare time, she enjoys writing poetry and prose, cooking, treasure-hunting, traveling, and boxing!